First year survival tips

Your first year at the University of Sydney will be fun, exciting, challenging and at times, very unfamiliar. There is a multitude of activities, programs and support for you to choose from so below, we have 10 survival tips to help you navigate your journey.

  1. Be proactive!
    Lots of other students won’t know anyone either. Be the first to say ‘hello’ and strike a conversation with your classmates. Have a look at the Counselling and Psychological Services (CAPS) e-books about relationships and communication for some tips to help you.
  2. Ask for help
    Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you are struggling. The Uni provides a range of support services to assist you at any point during your degree.
  3. Join a mentoring program
    Many faculties offer a mentoring program for new first-year students. Joining a mentoring program is the perfect way to meet other students, and have a senior student as a contact point during your first few weeks of uni. Check if your faculty offers a mentoring program on your faculty website.
  4. Important dates
    Know the important dates that relate to you, and set reminders for them! This will include University-wide dates and dates relevant to your course and subjects, listed in your unit of study outlines.
  5. Explore the area
    The Camperdown/Darlington Campus is close to Glebe, Newtown, and the Sydney CBD. These are vibrant areas with a range of recreational and entertainment options. You can also explore the other campuses – Sydney College of the Arts is located in Rozelle, which overlooks Sydney Harbour and has a range of contemporary art galleries to visit. Sydney Conservatorium of Music is located in the Royal Botanical Gardens and runs regular concerts and performances. To find out more, see what's on in the University events calendar.
  6. Plan your time and be organised
    University study is a lot more independent and self-directed than high school. Attend a CAPS workshop or a Learning Centre workshop to help get you started.
  7. Interact online!
    Join the Uni’s Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to the Uni’s YouTube channel.
  8. Access the USU and SUSF
    Get an Access card and join some clubs and societies. The University of Sydney Union’s clubs and societies are a great way to meet people and have fun. You can also check out Sydney Uni Sport & Fitness (SUSF) for all your fitness needs – both social and elite. Wander along to the stalls at O-week to check out the two on-campus fitness facility offerings, the 40 different sporting clubs, and the range of social sport activities and classes you can take.
  9. Immerse yourself in culture
    Check out the cultural and artistic life of the University. The University has regular art shows, theatre performances and museum exhibitions.
  10. Understand Uni terminology
    Often hear words that everybody else seem to know the meaning of? Check out this helpful glossary of common terms.